Nothing Learned from Chinese History

My name is Daniel. I was an English teacher in Seoul, South Korea, and am now a writer who has
published three books including South Korea: Our Story by Daniel Nardini.
                                As I watch the conclusion of the 19th National Congress of the Chinese
Communist Party, it is only too clear that there is nothing democratic about the whole affair. It is
simply nothing more than those who wish to hold supreme power in the Party coming out on top and
simply getting rid of their rivals. The Chinese people make no choices in any of this, and nobody
votes for who will be in the top Party leadership. So I have to ask myself what has been learned from
Chinese history? Only that the Chinese Communist Party will stay and keep itself in power no matter
what. I personally find Chinese history extremely tragic and depressing. It seems that no matter how
much the people may want change, they seem to always get a new emperor in everything but name.
With maybe one brief time, China seems to have almost always had people with total power rule
over the nation with an iron fist, and shut most of the people out of the political process. We have seen
this from Mao Zedong to Deng Xiaoping to Jiang Zemin to Hu Jintao and now Xi Jinping. It means
that people I used to know in China are no freer and no better off than they were 25 years before.
The only hope I hold out is for the example of Taiwan to shine through and hopefully teach the
people in China that democracy and freedom do not contradict China social and economic
base. I also hope that people in South Korea will realize that freedom has a price to be paid in
order to remain free. The last thing I want to see is South Korea fall into the dark epoch of what
China is now or what the Joseon kingdom was.